CALIFORNIA MOUNTAIN GUIDES, INC. was conceived in 1992 when it became evident that a company with a goal to teach rock climbing in a completely new way was needed in the marketplace.
SCOTT COSGROVE, who had been guiding and instructing for other schools for almost 14 years, decided that CMG’s thrust would be towards simplifying and modernizing climbing instruction with a focus on real world, state-of-the-art instruction that allows clients and students to progress in a fast and safe manner, while placing values on easy to remember and applied systems. Scott has always felt that traditional instruction methods greatly over complicate climbing and leave the student baffled. CMG strives to teach simple, easy to remember systems that will serve any climber throughout his career.
CMG began as a civilian climbing school, but in the last ten years has catered to and advised the military exclusively. The simple training methods of CMG have made it possible for an operator to lead a climb on his own with as little as one day of instruction. In fact it is not uncommon to have a rank beginner walk away from a five day trip with the ability to lead a multi-pitch on their own.
Now in its 22nd year of operation, CMG strives to teach all aspects of rock climbing to our clients from tying basic knots to big walls. Our training trips have taken us all over the United States and the world, including Patagonia, Australia, Alaska, the Himalayas, Canada, and Jordan’s Wadi Rum. Our advisors have led climbs up the Amazing Monoliths of El Captain and Half Dome in Yosemite Valley, into the Seneca Mountains of West Virginia, and in Red Rocks Canyon outside of Las Vegas, just to name a few. We not only guide and teach our operators, but allow them to climb and lead on their own as we climb alongside of them. It is our goal to produce competent lead climbers with a specialized skill set, an aspect of climbing that very few other services will provide. And many of our students have gone onto become instructors and advisors in their own right.
Our instruction at CMG includes all aspects of rock climbing including, anchoring, leading, direct aid climbing, and advanced free climbing. We teach many skills that are exclusive to the military, including reading large terrain, finding and identifying enemy hides, moving large groups over vertical terrain, and ascending and descending fixed ropes. Our systems are state-of-the-art and do not rely on old and outdated methods.
CMG and Scott Cosgrove, who has been working with the Navy since 1988, have trained operators for the Navy Seal Teams and DEVGRU, with whom we have well over a hundred multi-week training trips alone. We have also had the privilege of working with the Army Rangers, the Airforce PJs, Marine Recon and Delta Force.
We know of no other company that even comes close to possessing the experience and advanced techniques of our advisor/guides in the progression of instruction that we bring to the plate. It is for this reason alone that DEVGRU has continued to return to CMG over the past 24 years for the kind of specialized training we provide them.